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News Archive 2023

2023 Press Releases And Alerts
December 2023
REL Holiday Schedule 2023

Selmon Expressway Reversible Express Lanes (REL)

Tampa, Fla. (December 21, 2023) –  For the upcoming holiday, beginning today, Thursday, December 21, 2023, at 1:00 p.m., the Selmon Expressway Reversible Express Lanes (REL) will be open eastbound from the downtown area towards Brandon and will remain open towards Brandon until Tuesday, December 26, 2023, at 6:00 a.m. At that time normal hours of operation will resume, and all traffic will be reversed to the westbound direction from Brandon to the downtown area.

On December 29, 2023, at 1:00 p.m., the REL will be open in the eastbound direction from the downtown area towards Brandon (normal operation). The REL will remain in this configuration until January 2, 2024, at 6:00 a.m. when all traffic will be reversed to the westbound direction from Brandon to the downtown area. Motorists are advised that the hours of operation on the Reversible Express Lanes are subject to change without notice for construction/maintenance work.

For more information, call 813.272.6740 or email info@tampa‐xway.com.

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November 2023
Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority Unveils Two New Slip Ramps to Enhance Commuter Experience

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority Unveils Two New Slip Ramps to Enhance Commuter Experience

Investing Toll Revenue Back into the Community for Improved Traffic Flow

TAMPA, Fla., (November 6, 2023) - The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is proud to announce the opening of two new slip ramps along the Reversible Express Lanes (REL), marking a significant milestone in the ongoing efforts to enhance the transportation experience for Tampa Bay commuters.

Slip ramps are additional access points/internal ramps within the Expressway; they are the on-ramps and off-ramps from the Selmon Expressway to REL. The new slip ramps allow westbound drivers to enter the REL near I-75 (avoiding congestion at Faulkenburg Road and 301) and then exit the REL near IKEA and continue on the local lanes of the Selmon Expressway to destinations further west. This will reduce morning congestion on the westbound Selmon Expressway near I-75, avoid congestion near the I-4 Connector, and reduce backup at the Twiggs Street and REL intersection.

"We are dedicated to improving the daily commute for our community," said Greg Slater, THEA, Executive Director and CEO. "These new slip ramps are a testament to our ongoing efforts to optimize traffic management and ensure that the Tampa Bay region thrives.”

The new slip ramps are part of THEA's commitment to reinvesting toll revenue into the community, facilitating smoother traffic flow and a more efficient commute for Tampa Bay residents.

Slip Ramp Benefits:

  1. Seamless Transition: The new slip ramps are strategically positioned along the REL, allowing drivers to make a seamless transition from the express lanes to the local lanes.
  2. Continuous Journey: REL drivers can now continue their journey, enjoying an uninterrupted drive all the way to Gandy Bridge without unnecessary exits and reentries.
  3. Reduced Congestion: By eliminating the need to exit at Twiggs Street in downtown Tampa, these slip ramps contribute to reducing cut-through traffic and congestion on city streets.

“Time and time again, our community leaders talk about our transportation challenges in the region and the potential for these challenges to negatively affect our growth and safety. All of us at THEA are proud to deliver a solution that addresses one of those challenges with congestion relief while addressing safety by reducing cut-through traffic on neighborhood streets,” said THEA Board Chair Vince Cassidy.

For more information about the newly opened slip ramps and other completed projects by THEA, please visit THEA's website.

THEA continues to be at the forefront of improving transportation in the Tampa Bay area, committed to delivering innovative solutions that make commuting more efficient. These new slip ramps represent a significant step toward enhancing the daily lives of our customers.

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About THEA

Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is an award-winning and dynamic transportation agency that owns, manages, and operates the Selmon Expressway, Meridian Avenue, Brandon Parkway, and the Selmon Greenway. We are committed to bringing the best technology and most progressive mobility concepts possible to address current and future transportation challenges.

 

THEA processes 58 million toll transactions and serves almost 2 million customers annually, with an investment plan to deliver over $1.2 Billion in capital improvements to the community over the next ten years. As a community champion, we spearhead public-private partnerships for multi-modal transportation, promote transit-oriented development, and invest in walk/bike-friendly neighborhoods. All upcoming and current projects are funded 100% through THEA's toll and bond revenues, ensuring that finite taxpayer dollars are reserved for other transportation and community needs.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TampaHillsboroughExpresswayAuthority/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theaselmon/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/theaselmon/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/67132372/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNFl4QVHuqyXNyjcEFTh17Q

 

September 2023
Labor Day Schedule 2023

Selmon Expressway Reversible Express Lanes (REL)

Tampa, Fla. (September 1, 2023) – On Friday, September 1, 2023, the Selmon Expressway Reversible Express Lanes (REL) will be opened in the eastbound direction – from the downtown area towards Brandon. It will remain in this configuration until Tuesday, September 5th. On Tuesday, September 5, 2023, normal hours of operation will resume in the westbound direction – from Brandon to the downtown area.

Motorists are advised that the hours of operation on the Reversible Express Lanes are subject to change without notice.
For more information, email info@tampa‐xway.com.

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August 2023
TRAFFIC UPDATE: REL Resumes Normal Operations

TRAFFIC ALERT: The Selmon Expressway's Reversible Express Lanes (REL) will resume normal operations (Westbound toward downtown) tomorrow morning (Thursday, Aug. 31) @ 6:00 a.m. Please drive carefully and be safe!

TRAFFIC ALERT: Tropical Storm Idalia

TRAFFIC ALERT: Due to the expected impact of Tropical Storm Idalia, the Reversible Express Lanes (REL) will be open for eastbound traffic until further notice. Please drive carefully and be safe.

 

Cathie Wood to Keynote 2023 FAV Summit

Renowned Investor Cathie Wood to Keynote 2023 Florida Automated Vehicles Summit

Summit Features Cutting-Edge Technology Demonstrations and Discussions in Automated, Connected, Electric, and Shared Mobility

 Tampa, Fla. (August 1, 2023) – The 2023 Florida Automated Vehicles Summit (FAV Summit) proudly announces Cathie Wood, Founder, CEO, and CIO of ARK Investment Management LLC, as its keynote speaker. For the past ten years The FAV Summit has assembled nationally recognized experts, policymakers, and industry leaders to discuss the state of autonomous and connected vehicle technologies, implementation opportunities, and challenges to successfully integrate within existing transportation networks.

As a renowned investor, Wood has consistently demonstrated her exceptional ability to identify disruptive technologies and trends ahead of the curve, making her insights highly sought after. Her foresight in electric vehicle (EV) technologies has been particularly noteworthy, with Wood serving as a vocal advocate for the widespread adoption of EVs - recognizing their potential to revolutionize the automotive industry and reduce carbon emissions. Her vision aligns perfectly with the summit's focus on autonomous and electric transportation advancements.

“Cathie’s innovation and focus on the future makes her presence the highlight of this year’s conference. We are honored that she is our keynote," said former Florida State Senator Jeff Brandes, FAV Summit founder.

In addition to her expertise in EVs, Wood's involvement in the robotaxi market adds another layer of significance to her keynote address. Ark Investment has been actively investing in leading companies at the forefront of autonomous vehicle development, specifically, those dedicated to the emerging field of robotaxis. Wood's deep understanding of the potential impact of autonomous vehicles on transportation, coupled with her investment acumen, positions her as a leading voice shaping the future of this transformative industry.

From September 6 - September 8, 2023, the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) will host the 11th Annual Florida Automated Vehicles (FAV) Summit in Tampa, Florida, at the Tampa Marriott Water Street. The 2023 FAV Summit will focus on ACES mobility. ACES is an acronym for the four rising stars of mobility - Automated, Connected, Electric, and Shared.

In addition to nationally recognized speaker, the Summit includes live demonstrations. For more information, visit FAVsummit.com. To register for this conference, please visit favsummit.com/register.

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About the FAV Summit

The Florida Automated Vehicles (FAV) Summit assembles industry leaders from around the world to address technologies, operations, and policy issues in the whole Automated, Connected, Electric, and Shared (ACES) world. The summit’s mission is to gain insight into what the State of Florida is doing to create the ideal climate for implementing and deploying autonomous and connected vehicle technologies.

To find more information on the FAV Summit, please visit https://favsummit.com.

July 2023
THEA 60 for 60

THEA Celebrates 60 Years in Tampa Bay with “60 for 60” Campaign

60 Acts of Kindness to Thank the Tampa Bay Region for Their Support

Tampa, Fla. (July 18, 2023) – The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) was established by the Florida Legislature on July 23, 1963, as a transportation option to bring roadway infrastructure projects online sooner using non-conventional funding. Since then, the Tampa Bay region has evolved and changed from a quiet West Coast Florida town to one of the most attractive places in the country. Throughout that time, THEA has been committed to providing safe, efficient transportation solutions while also investing in the communities served. 

To celebrate its 60th year of operation, THEA is launching its “60 for 60” campaign. The campaign targets 60 ways for THEA to engage with the community through a full schedule of community activations and investments. 

“When we thought about how to mark this important milestone, we wanted to draw back to what was really important to our core values as a local provider of transportation solutions. We care about being good neighbors, and with our “60 for 60” campaign, we can be involved through time and financial investments throughout the year in a way that contributes to the well-being of our neighborhoods,” said THEA CEO and Executive Director Greg Slater.

By being an active partner in connecting communities and reinvesting in the Tampa Bay region for the past 60 years, THEA has championed state-of-the-art transportation options and safe, efficient travel. As an independent agency of the state, the THEA owns, maintains, and operates four facilities within Hillsborough County: the Selmon Expressway, the Brandon Parkway, Meridian Avenue, and the Selmon Greenway. 

Along Selmon Greenway, THEA has built a series of pocket parks with landscaping, benches, and artwork that enhances downtown Tampa’s aesthetics, one of which is the award-winning Deputy Kotfila, Jr. Memorial Dog Park. The agency partners with community organizations on everything from beautification to economic development to education and is committed to enhancing the community and activating urban spaces. The “60 for 60” campaign focuses on five pillars of giving: 

  • Inspiring the next generation with STEM
  • Connecting communities/healthy communities
  • Sustainability
  • Improving mobility/activating spaces
  • Being a good community partner

Throughout the year, THEA will be giving time and providing financial investments into organizations within these pillars. The agency will post its 60 ways of giving throughout the year on its social media pages and website. https://www.tampa-xway.com/.

 

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ABOUT THEA:

Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is an award-winning and dynamic transportation agency that owns, manages, and operates the Selmon Expressway, Meridian Avenue, Brandon Parkway, and the Selmon Greenway. We are committed to bringing the best technology and most progressive mobility concepts possible to address current and future transportation challenges.

THEA processes 58 million toll transactions and serves almost 2 million customers annually, with an investment plan to deliver over $1.2 Billion in capital improvements to the community over the next 10 years. As a community champion, we spearhead public-private partnerships for multi-modal transportation, promote transit-oriented development, and invest in walk/bike-friendly neighborhoods. All upcoming and current projects are funded 100% through THEA's toll and bond revenues, ensuring that finite taxpayer dollars are reserved for other transportation and community needs.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TampaHillsboroughExpresswayAuthority/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theaselmon/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/theaselmon/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/67132372/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNFl4QVHuqyXNyjcEFTh17Q

June 2023
Keisha Pickett Boyd Appointed

Keisha Pickett Boyd Appointed as Director of Communications, Strategy, and Community Engagement at The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA)

Tampa, Fla., (June 20, 2023) - The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Keisha Pickett Boyd as the new Director of Communications, Strategy, and Community Engagement. With over two decades of experience in journalism, public relations, event planning, marketing, and community outreach, Boyd brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her role at THEA.

Keisha offers a diverse and multicultural background to the organizations she serves. With a proven track record of developing strong relationships with national news outlets, community and professional organizations, leaders, and everyday citizens, THEA’s leadership is confident that Keisha will be an asset. Her previous positions include Director of Public Relations at Burrell Communications, overseeing prominent clients such as Toyota and the American Red Cross. She also served as Director of Public Relations at H&L Partners, managing the McDonald's business in five regions, and held the position of Director of Communications at Bethune-Cookman University. In 2003, Keisha established the Pickett Public Relations Group, collaborating with renowned entities such as Google, Paragon Film Music, Warner Brothers, and Disney.

"I am excited to join the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority as the Director of Communications, Strategy, and Community Engagement. Greg Slater and the THEA team are doing exceptional work, and I am excited to contribute to the organization's mission of enhancing transportation infrastructure and improving the quality of life for the Tampa Bay community. I look forward to leveraging my experience and expertise to effectively communicate THEA's initiatives and engage with the community in meaningful ways," said Keisha Pickett Boyd.

Her unwavering commitment to acquiring new knowledge daily to enrich her mind and spirit aligns perfectly with THEA's mission. Boyd firmly believes in continuous learning, personal growth, and giving back.

THEA's CEO and Executive Director Greg Slater added, "Our team at THEA eagerly anticipates the positive impact and transformative leadership that Keisha Pickett Boyd will bring to her role. Her extensive experience, dedication to growth, and commitment to serving others make her an invaluable addition to the team."

Keisha is a five-time Griot Drum Journalism Award winner for published features on BlackintheBay.com and Power Broker Magazine. Through her work on BlackintheBay.com, Keisha has reached thousands of Bay Area citizens, serving as a prominent voice for Tampa's African American community. In addition, she has been named one of Tampa Bay's Most Influential People and recognized as a *tbt Rising Star.

She is a distinguished graduate of the prestigious Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) and went on to earn an MBA from the University of Phoenix.

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ABOUT THEA

The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is a user-financed public agency led by a Board of local citizens. The dynamic transportation agency owns, manages, and operates the Selmon Expressway, Meridian Avenue, Brandon Parkway, and the Selmon Greenway. With over 200,000 daily expressway commuters and thousands of pedestrians utilizing THEA's urban trail networks, the agency is focused on serving and investing in the community to transform and excel with transportation options that enhance the quality of life. Using toll revenues and bonds, all tolls collected by THEA are reinvested back into projects in Hillsborough County.

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TampaHillsboroughExpresswayAuthority/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theaselmon/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/theaselmon/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/67132372/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNFl4QVHuqyXNyjcEFTh17Q

May 2023
Selmon Expressway Reversible Express Lanes (REL) - Closure at Downtown Entrance

Selmon Expressway Reversible Express Lanes (REL) - Closure at Downtown Entrance

Tampa, May 3, 2023 - On May 3, 2023, the Selmon Expressway's Reversible Express Lanes (REL) gates at the Downtown Entrance will be closed at 7:00 PM EST. Local Lane users will be able to access the REL at 34th Street. The REL will resume normal operations on May 4, 2023, at 5:00 AM EST.

Motorists are advised that the hours of operation on the Reversible Express Lanes are subject to change without notice for construction/maintenance work. The staff and crews of the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority appreciate your patience during this time.

For more information, call 813.272.6740 or email [email protected].

April 2023
THEA Releases Gandy Boulevard Traffic Study Data

THEA Releases Gandy Boulevard Traffic Study Data

Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority Study indicates significant safety benefits and traffic reductions along the South Tampa corridor since the opening of the Selmon Extension

Tampa, FL (April 26, 2023) – When the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) opened the Selmon Extension in 2021, the 1.9-mile toll lane located in the median of Gandy Boulevard was intended to provide a direct connection for regional travelers who had been utilizing the local lanes of Gandy Boulevard to reach destinations beyond the South Tampa Corridor. The regional travelers’ commute, combined with the local business travelers, caused delays and congestion for residents and shoppers living in the adjacent neighborhoods. The Extension offered a safer and more efficient route, with preliminary data showing that the opening would significantly reduce intersection traffic signal wait times at Westshore Boulevard, Manhattan Boulevard, Lois Avenue, and Dale Mabry Highway to move traffic more efficiently.

DoMA Home Furnishings, General Manager Rosanna Davis said, “Gandy Blvd is a great location for a furniture store like DoMA. The addition of the Westshore Marina District and updated shopping plazas have boosted the popularity of this part of town. The Selmon Extension has allowed for the additional traffic to move easily throughout the corridor or to bypass it quickly. We have seen a marked difference in traffic flow since the opening of the extension. Not only is it easier for us to get to work, but our customers have remarked on how much easier it is to get to us.”

Davis’ observation appears to be spot on. Today, THEA released the findings of a Gandy Boulevard traffic study comparing traffic wait times, crashes, and speed ratios in the two years prior to the Selmon Extension’s opening to the operational years of the Extension in 2021 and 2022 (note- 2020 was excluded due to the COVID-19 pandemic). The scope of the traffic study was limited to the South Tampa segment of Gandy Boulevard at the Westshore Boulevard intersection to the Bayshore Boulevard intersection.

“When you are in the early planning and delivery of transportation projects, you work to communicate the benefits that were modeled using best transportation practices. This data indicates what the travelers along this route are experiencing, which are the safety and traffic benefits THEA outlined here, indicating that the Selmon Extension is doing exactly what we said it would do - and that is important to our entire team,” said Greg Slater, Executive Director and CEO, THEA.

The study indicates safety and traffic improvements along Gandy Boulevard, including the following key findings:

  • 22% decrease in crashes along Gandy Boulevard from 2018 to 2022.
  • Reduction in crashes between 22% to 42% for the top three crash types (rear end, angle, and sideswipe), and the associated economic benefit.
  • Reduction in crashes between 7% to 36% at the four signalized intersections along Gandy Boulevard.
  • Reductions between 12% to 64% in crashes related to Dark-Lighted, Dawn, and Dusk lighting conditions.
  • Travel times were reduced significantly along Gandy Boulevard after the construction of The Selmon Extension
  • The speeds are uniform and closer to the posted speed, thus creating safer conditions along Gandy Boulevard.

The traffic study was presented to THEA’s Board at its monthly meeting on Monday, April 24. THEA Board Chairman, Vincent Cassidy, added, “While we were concerned that during construction of the Selmon Extension, the businesses along Gandy would be impacted, our hope was post-construction businesses would benefit from less commuter traffic backing up the road, leaving the corridor available to those that want to shop Gandy. We aimed to deliver a safer and more connected route, and while our region has experienced tremendous growth, and more vehicles on our road, the data from this study proves we’ve accomplished the goal of a safer, more reliable driving experience. I am very proud of our team – nothing makes me happier than delivering on our promises.”

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ABOUT THEA

The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is a user-financed public agency led by a Board of local citizens. The dynamic transportation agency owns, manages, and operates the Selmon Expressway, Meridian Avenue, Brandon Parkway, and the Selmon Greenway. With over 200,000 daily expressway commuters and thousands of pedestrians utilizing THEA's urban trail networks, the agency is focused on serving and investing in the community to transform and excel with transportation options that enhance the quality of life. Using toll revenues and bonds, all tolls collected by THEA are reinvested back into projects in Hillsborough County.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TampaHillsboroughExpresswayAuthority/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theaselmon/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/theaselmon/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/67132372/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNFl4QVHuqyXNyjcEFTh17Q

Selmon Expressway - Reversible Express Lanes Closure

Tampa, FL (April 10, 2023) - On April 10, 2023, the Selmon Expressway's Reversible Express Lanes (REL) will be closed from 7:00 PM EST until 5:00 AM EST. The REL is also scheduled to be closed on April 12, 2023, from 7:00 PM EST until 5:00 AM EST, where normal hours of operation will resume.

Motorists are advised that the hours of operation on the Reversible Express Lanes are subject to change without notice for construction/maintenance work.

For more information, call 813.272.6740 or email [email protected].

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Lane Closures SR 45 21st and 22nd Streets at Selmon Expressway

Tampa, Fla. (April 3, 2023) – The Florida Department of Transportation's contractor, Traffic Control Devices, Inc., is making safety improvements to the intersection of US 41 (21st Street/22nd Street) at Selmon Expressway in Tampa. Lane closures will happen on Monday, April 3, through Thursday, April 6, nights from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Improvements include:

  • installation of new traffic signals
  • installation of mid-block pedestrian crosswalks with raised traffic
  • separators and pedestrian refuges
  • adding signage and necessary pavement markings

Construction activities are taking place during daytime and nighttime hours. Work requiring lane closures will occur at night from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. Access to ramps, sidewalks, and driveways is to be maintained. Please use caution when traveling through the work zone and remain alert or pedestrians and construction workers.

This project is expected to finish in fall 2023. For more information, call 813.272.6740 or email [email protected].

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January 2023
Selmon Expressway Temporary Detour on Falkenburg Road

Tampa, Fla. (January 27, 2023) – A temporary detour will be in place at Falkenburg Road to prevent entry on the Lee Roy Selmon. Drivers will be diverted to the 301 entrance and exit ramps. In addition, there will be inside lane closures in both directions for traffic heading to and from I-75. Detours will begin on January 29, 2023, and occur every night through February 9, 2023.

The staff and crews of the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority appreciate everyone's patience during this time. On an ongoing basis, day and nighttime lane closures will occur throughout this project. For more information, learn more about this project at https://www.tampa-xway.com/rel-slip-ramp-construction/, call 813.272.6740 or email info@tampa‐xway.com.

THEA Launches Public Survey for Park Ideas

January 4, 2023 (Tampa, Fla.) – The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is launching a public survey to help determine features that should be included in the design plan for green space underneath the Selmon Expressway at Bay to Bay Boulevard and MacDill Avenue. A few years back, THEA worked with neighborhood associations to activate the space with dog park. However, the agency realized that this area could accommodate more than just a dog park.

Since the South Selmon Capacity Project will take several years, THEA – with the community’s help – is able to design a more robust area and to make it a true community gathering space.

The survey offers voting options for "Flexible Space" and the "Active Space." Flexible spaces are for community-organized events and don't have permanent physical features. For example, a flexible space could support farmer's markets, group fitness classes, food truck events, concerts, and more. In contrast, an active space will be dedicated to physical activity, such as a ball court or a playground. This survey ensures that our community and neighbors are a part of the design process so that we can create a space that welcomes and connects our Tampa residents.

Voting opens today, January 4, 2023, and will close on January 27, 2023, at 11:59 PM. The voting information will be shared with the design-build firm so they can work to incorporate the public's wishes into the design before the commencement of construction of the South Selmon Capacity Project. The public can vote by visiting www.southselmoncapacity.com/survey/ and following the page prompts. 

In addition to receiving information on the community space options, THEA will construct sound walls along the entire route. Construction to increase the capacity of the Lee Roy Selmon Expressway by one lane in each direction is expected to begin in 2024. The reimagined green space at the Bay to Bay underpass will be completed at the end of the capacity project in 2028.

Media Contact
Sue Chrzan
Communications Director
813-272-6740 ext 130

[email protected]om

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